When spending a lot of time attending meetings, naturally, also a huge amount of time are spent preparing and processing these meetings.
Preparation and processing
Did you know that managers spend ten hours in meetings in average per week? And more than seven hours in preparation and processing? That is the result of a new study regarding meetings, made by the Danish organisation Lederne. Add up the numbers and you have above 17 hours of your work week spent on meetings and related activities…. That's more than 12 work weeks every year.
You might also want to read: Make your meetings more efficient
Save time in meetings
According to the study managers attend eight meetings every week. On average, every meeting is above one hour. By cutting the meeting short by 15 minutes you can improve the efficiency. Outlook suggests one hour meetings, when you sent out notifications. By calling to a shorter meeting, you state that there is no time for small talk.
Start on time
As the facilitator of the meeting, it is up to you to improve the effectiveness, for example by shortening the meeting. Also it is in your interest to start on time. In a lot of companies time is wasted waiting for attendees to show up. Particularly in internal meetings. When waiting for attendees you are indicating that it is ok to be late. Start on time, save crucial time and acknowledge your colleagues who are on time.
Clean your calendar
There is plenty of time to save if you start sorting out in both the notifications you send and receive. If you are in doubt whether one of your colleagues should receive a notification, then they should not.
Often meetings are characterised by too many attendees, thereby you risk:
- That the meeting will drag on because everybody wants a say
- That the attendees feel they are wasting time
State the goal of the meeting
To prevent the meeting to drag out and having dissatisfied attendees, you should state the goal of the meeting. That way it will be easier for you to identify which attendees are required. Likewise, you should do this when you get a notification of a meeting. Ask yourself if your presence will contribute to achieve the aim of the meeting. If you are just delivering a message, then meet up with the chairperson in advance. That way you prevent attending the full meeting for two minutes of passing on information.
Cutting off two hours of meetings per week is equivalent to saving two and a half weeks every year spent in meetings. Besides you save the time used in preparation and processing.
* The figures are based on a standard Danish workweek of 37 hours and a year that contains 47 working weeks and five weeks of vacation